Macquarie to merge two trading businesses into single unit

The logo of Australia's biggest investment bank Macquarie Group Ltd at their headquarters in Australia on Oct 28, 2016.
The logo of Australia's biggest investment bank Macquarie Group Ltd at their headquarters in Australia on Oct 28, 2016.PHOTO: REUTERS

SYDNEY (BLOOMBERG) - Macquarie Group will combine two of its three capital-markets businesses as Australia's biggest investment bank seeks to bring its trading activities under one roof. 

The merger of the Securities Group and the Commodities and Financial Markets Group will bring together the firm's execution, research, derivatives, trading, fixed-income, foreign-exchange and commodities businesses, the bank said in a statement on Tuesday. While there are no plans for imminent job cuts in the new unit, headcount reductions could come from natural attrition, a person familiar with the matter said.

Andrew Downe, who has headed the Commodities and Financial Markets Group since 1997, will take charge of the new Commodities and Global Markets Group. Stevan Vrcelj, who ran the Securities Group, will step down from both his current role and the executive board.

Investment banks around the world have consolidated their trading arms and cut jobs in recent years after a slump in activity amid concern over slowing China and global growth. In Macquarie's latest fiscal six-month period, profit attributable to the bank's capital market-facing business fell 34 per cent from a year earlier, it said in a presentation in October.

Macquarie shares rose 0.5 per cent to A$83.74 (S$119.4) at 12:22 p.m. in Sydney. The benchmark S&P/ASX 200 Index was little changed.